I've been maintaining this blog (for better or for worse) over the last eight years. Over these years, its natural evolution has led it into becoming something of a niche place for discussion of music in general and Qawwali in particular. Rather than trying to return my existing blog to its pre-Qawwali eclectic roots, I decided I’d start anew on Tumblr. So if you’re interested in music, Qawwali and subcontinental culture, keep reading/listening/watching/commenting here. For all of the above and everything else under the sun, head on over to my Tumblr page .

Thursday, July 1, 2010

...Of Diseases and Diphthongs

I remember discussing a disease with a friend the other day ( I'm afraid 80% of small talk between doctors is about diseases, don't let Grey's Anatomy fool you) when I mentioned in passing that I couldn't help but liking the name of an otherwise quite unwholesome illness. It was when I let my tongue roll around the word a few times as it were, that my friend slowly edged away, muttering under his breath and giving me the eye.

I have a special place in my heart for a few words because of the sheer vocal pleasure I get from pronouncing them. You can't exactly call them 'musical' words, but they have a nice 'ring' to them as Bertie Wooster would say. Growing up watching the BBC back when there weren't that many Lancashire, Yorkshire or *shudder* Glaswegian accents around, I couldn't help but appreciate the niceties of enunciation and the value of what the Pythons called a 'beautiful speaking voice'. I don't know what's the secret balance of vowels and consonants and diphthongs that makes a word especially pleasant to pronounce, but I love pronouncing the words I love and attempt to drag at least one or two into any given conversation . It's a bit like name-dropping, only more geekish.

Here then, are some of my favorite words in no particular order. I'll write as many as I can remember off the top of my head.

Schopenhauer (try dragging that into a conversation!)
Henri Bergson
Marble Cake

Books Of The Week,"The Life And Works Of Amir Khusrau","Young Men In Spats"
Music Of The Week,"Kaatskill Serenade"Bob Dylan, "Yaad Piya Ki Aaye"Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan


  1. Methinks 'Gonorrhea' might not be the one to publicise :)

  2. Hehe, it was the one word that started out the whole train of thought leading to this post, so it couldn't be left out.